The Introvert’s Guide to…New Beginnings

In this episode, Jess and Phil talk about new beginnings, and how to handle them, from the first day of a new job, to impending parenthood, and try to find some helpful solutions to dealing with those first days and new beginnings.


Phil Rickaby: I’m Phil and I’m a writer and performer, and I am also an introvert

Jessica McAuley: and I’m Jess McCauley and I am a theater maker and I am also an introvert. And this is the introvert’s guide to.

Phil Rickaby: On the introvert’s guide to we talk about the introvert life and how to live it to the fullest.

Jessica McAuley: We’ll choose a topic and discuss it as well as try to find other helpful hints on social media and the internet at large.

Phil Rickaby: If you want to drop us a line, we would love to hear from you. You can find us on Twitter and Instagram at introvert guide. The number two, and you can find the website at

If you want to send us a message, you can do that through the website, or you can email us at introvertsguidetostuff@gmail.Com. And remember, we may use your questions or comments on an upcoming episode of the introvert’s guide to.

Jessica McAuley: And if you like the podcast and you’ll listen on apple podcasts, please consider leaving a comment and a five-star rating, your comments and ratings, help new people find the show, but even better, whether you listen on apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts.

If you know someone that might like the introvert’s guide to. Tell them about it. Some of our favorite podcasts became our favorites because someone we know told us about them.

Phil Rickaby: So just as we record this, we are this is like the first one that we’re recording of the new year. Our listeners will have already heard a couple of episodes that we recorded last year. Cause we bank episodes. And but this is the first one of the new year. So it’s a new chapter. There’s so many new things going to be happening this year.

If you get what I mean, Jess, she’s pregnant. So there, you know, we wanted to talk a bit about the first day of a new chapter and we all have those first days, whether it’s the first day of a new job or the first day of, of, of, I don’t know parenthood or there’s so many first days of new chapters for all of us What are your thoughts on first days?

Jessica McAuley: I, I never used to love them, but I think it’s been more since I’m like maybe my mid twenties. I live for a new beginning. I love new chapters. I’m not afraid of change anymore. I there’s just something really exciting. For me. I don’t know if that’s just like, I just come from a small town. So

Phil Rickaby: just to go a little bit further, I need you to turn down the gain on your microphone.

It’s clipping a little bit, and I just want to make sure that we don’t blow it. Anybody’s ears while we were talking about. I think I turned it down. Yeah, you’re good. I think you’re good. Okay.

Jessica McAuley: Also I think this episode gets released on February, February 2nd,

Phil Rickaby: something like that? Yeah. Well that’s something Feb – Feb something.

Yeah. It’s probably February 3rd. No. Well, I don’t know. I mean, who can keep track of anything these days new? Like, okay, so.

This is, this is what happens when we’ve had a couple of weeks of not doing this. Suddenly we lose. All sense of how this works.

Jessica McAuley: No, no. We’re professionals.

Phil Rickaby: Yes we are. Yes we are. When it’s interesting you say about, about that you don’t fear first days anymore. Could you, could you talk a little bit about that?

Because for me, especially, like, if you’re thinking about like the first day of a new job That can be very intimidating thing. It’s it? It can also, it can almost be frightening. What, like how did you get to the point where you were no longer? I don’t know. Afraid of first days.

Jessica McAuley: I, okay. Don’t get me wrong.

There’s still like some butterflies that I do get everyone is going to be to some degree nervous, but absolutely for me, it was just. I think I got to this point where I didn’t, I changed was so seldom that when I did start to get to my mid twenties, that I was really looking forward to change and something in me had said, I.

Something in me had told me to hold onto that feeling. It’s a good feeling. It’s something to be excited for. Even if it doesn’t go the way that you planned, it’s still a learning experience. It’s something to take away from. And I just was so tired of wanting change to happen, but being so scared of it and.

I think when I started my job that I, you know, I currently have now, I think that was the first time I actively went in and said, you are not nervous. You are going to be the new kid in class. Well, it’s a workspace, but I felt, I felt like a new kid at school. So. And I was just excited to meet new people. I was ready to embrace people and you know, I, again, I work at a pretty incredible theater company, so I, what wasn’t to love about that, there were just too many pros.

And even if something, a change was going to come, that may have been negative. As weird as it sounds to say, I now look for the silver lining.

Phil Rickaby: Well, you also, I mean, one of the big changes was the fact that you went from a job that you didn’t like so much to a job that when you leave something that you don’t like to something new that you, you, you go in thinking, cause it’s an improvement.

I’m going to like this much better than the other thing. It’s so much easier to, to look at, look for the positive and to be excited rather than nervous.

Jessica McAuley: Oh yeah.

Phil Rickaby: When I started my current job, which almost eight years ago now I started, I started this company and the first day was pretty nerve wracking just because I didn’t quite know what to expect.

Are we starting with a group of people? So I think there were. Seven people starting at the same time as me. So it was like, that was our cohort. And it was a pretty large cohort for the company. A lot of companies don’t hire that many at once. And so this was sort of like a new thing, but it was like we were being hired in a group.

And so we’re being trained in a group. And so it was like very all right, you’re the new guys you’re going to go and do all these things together, which was kind of not my style, but, you know, I tried to go along. But you know, so I went into it feeling really nervous. And the second day was just sort of a little bit more of the same.

And then at the end of the second day at a new job, they’re like, oh, by the way, it’s the CEO, his birthday today. So we’re doing a thing after work. And I was like, no, God, please, God Lord. No, no, but I did. I went and I stayed my requisite 30 minute.

Jessica McAuley: Oh, I’m proud of you. I’m proud of you. I yeah, I don’t know.I definitely felt comfortable saying no to the first company hangout,

Phil Rickaby: I did not!

Jessica McAuley:  but how could you be, it was the CEO. How do you say,

Phil Rickaby: what are you going to do there? You can’t be like, you know what? I, you know what, I know you guys, I know this is like my first day here, but you know, Not fucking into it

Jessica McAuley: I’m out of here. Oh my gosh.

Yeah, no, mine was just more so my coworkers were like, yeah, we’re going to grab a beer. You want one? I’m like, I’ve been on the phone all day. I’m good. How do you handle change then? Like when it comes to something, something is starting. Do you have a ritual? Do you have affirmations? How does feel recovery do it?

Phil Rickaby: I wish I had a ritual. I wish I had a affirmations. I’m more likely to be going to the new thing. And on the street car kind of freaking out a little, I should probably get better at that. I should get, I should probably be like, have a thing. Right. I need a playlist. I need platelets. Yeah. Some kind of like some kind of like, this is your first day playlist, but I haven’t had a first day in, in, in quite some time.

I think there there’s, there’s like. The interview. Thing is if you know something about the place you’re going to, and I think like, for example, on the first day of a new job, you don’t really know what you’re getting into. Right. You don’t know if there’s like, what is the culture going to be? I know they talked about culture at the interview and they talked about what it’s like, but what’s it really like?

Cause sometimes you go to an intro there. We’re a family here. Everybody loves each other. And then you show up on the first day and everybody’s like, look, fuck you. No, fuck you. And you’re like, wow, this place is really toxic. And you don’t actually know what you’re going to get when you, when you, when you actually show up.

And you don’t know who your coworkers are going to be. You don’t know anything which are, you know, again, these are things that I don’t know about you, but I hate not knowing about some kind of social gathering. Unfortunately, when I started the new job, everybody was very welcoming. And so it was, it was good that way.

But no, I, I’m not really good at setting myself up for not feeling anxiety on that first day. But then it kind of depends because.

You know, there are all kinds of first days, for example you know, to bring it to theater. Like we so often do on a fringe tour, there are lots of first days, who’s your first day promoting a show in a new city. Even if the city, you know, city, you don’t know, whatever. And you don’t know how that’s going to go.

I feel more confident about that than I do about the first avenue job, because I know my product. Right. I know what I’m what I’m promoting. I know, I know what I’m doing. I think the difference between that and a new job is that you don’t know what the job is really going to be like yet.

Jessica McAuley: And at least with a fringe tour, you’ve got two weeks and you are out of there.

Phil Rickaby: That’s right. That’s right. You’re not, you’re not stuck there for the long term. It’s it’s, it’s relatively a short-term commitment.

Jessica McAuley: I have a question for you. Are you anticipating change anytime soon?

Phil Rickaby: God, I hope not.

Jessica McAuley: Do you not like change?

Phil Rickaby: I don’t like you. Listen, listen. I am not. I am an old man. I don’t like change.

Jessica McAuley: No,

Phil Rickaby: here’s the thing. Here’s the thing I.

If you work with me now, it’d be a good time to just skip ahead about like 60 seconds or something. I’m kidding. I’m kidding. I, I don’t anticipate that kind of change. I don’t anticipate a jaw, a move in my job right now. One never knows what, what, what the future holds. I would, I like to be able to be, to, to, to make a shift that I’m doing more creative work.

Yes. But that’s not that’s not something that I’m actively doing right now. So there’s not, I don’t foresee a lot of change on the horizon for me at least. I mean, again, we don’t know what the future holds, but that’s not something that I’m going into this year planning.

Jessica McAuley: Okay. Yeah, that’s fair. I mean, sometimes change happens unexpectedly.

Sometimes we plan it.

Phil Rickaby: I know for me to ask you the same question, but I kind of know that there is some change coming for you.

Jessica McAuley: So I know it feels like almost like an end me. Here’s what I’m doing aside from, aside from the the impending life change I am about to experience I. Decided that I wasn’t going to do a new year’s resolution.

I decided that well, I mean, not, I decided we all know that new year’s resolutions are pretty finicky, tend to not stick with them. Let’s be Frank, the amount of weight loss journeys I have tried to go on and failed, like come on now, but

Phil Rickaby: I just want to break in for a second and just say, I have never, ever done new year’s resolute.

And I feel that is, I feel like my life has been better for it.

Jessica McAuley: Oh man. I envy you. You live a good life or it could be. That’s pretty good. That’s a good, that’s a good one. You’re a good time. I have. I oh, man, it’s almost embarrassing. How many I’ve made, how many journal entries are like, well, journal it’s a month left new year, but I heard a really good piece of advice.

A couple of years ago, which is instead of setting a new year’s resolution, why not set a goal for yourself that you start early. So started in November, December, and this is something you’re going to work up to. And that way in the new year, you’re already in the mindset of working toward this goal. I thought that was brilliant.

And then I decided to put my own spin on it. And again, not putting. Any sort of goal or a time limit on what I need to do in 2022, I’m going on mat leave. I’ve got a year of, of not saying it’s a vacation, but I am going to be home quite a bit and I need something to sink my teeth into. So I decided that my change, my new chapter, if you will, is I decided that I was going to apply for a writer’s residency for a show.

If I don’t get it, then I have a deadline to reach, to find a writers unit. That’s the only deadline I said is to ensure that I have some sort of accountability. I think that’s the only other change I’m anticipating is keeping myself more accountable because it’s been my goodness. It’s almost been four years since I’ve produced something.

That’s that’s going to be my first chapter. That’s the new, the new day coming of having something under my belt again. Oh my goodness. I miss theater, man.

Phil Rickaby: Of course. I mean, let’s face it. We all do. One of the things about new year’s resolutions, and I think one of the things that has always sort of, one of the reasons why I feel like it’s never really resonated with me is I think that the, one of the reasons why new year’s resolutions often don’t work is people make resolutions that they’re going to do a thing that they don’t really want to do.

For example, You make a new, your new year’s resolution. Like, you know, like this year I’m going to quit smoking if you smoke. Right. And, and, and do you really want to know you make the resolution? Cause you feel like you should, but you don’t want to. I, this year, my new year’s resolution is I’m going to lose weight.

Do you want. Kind of, but also you still like eating the things that you like to eat. I’m going to, I’m going to go to the gym every day and no, you don’t because you don’t want to do that. If you wanted to do it, you had done it. And so you set yourself up for. The closest I get to a new year’s resolution is I might sit down and I might say, here’s something that I want to accomplish this year.

And it’s something that I want to accomplish this year. Not like, oh, I guess I should. I should try to get rid of this 50 year old belly or something. Cause I don’t care about that. I mean, I care about it, but not enough to actually change my habits of boat, the things that I like to eat and the video games that I want to sit on my ass and play.

I have worked hard for this dad bod and I don’t feel like it’s worth it to give up right now.

But so I will say that. For example, like my goal this year, we’ve talked about this as you know, I did my, my second Christmas audio drama and the one next year is I need to write that I’ve I know how I know that I need to bring up the first, bring together the first one in this second one to create one storyline that makes them a trilogy.

And I know I have to finish writing it by August, but that’s. That’s the closest I get to a resolution because it’s something that I’m going to do and I want to do

Jessica McAuley: absolutely. Like, I think like that’s such a good way of putting it is when we are in charge of creating the change. We idealized change. We romanticize it.

I mean, yes, it would be great. If I could go to the gym five to six days a week, it’d be great, but I’m not interested in the gym. So maybe instead of let’s just use that one for an example, but. I want to make a lifestyle change toward my health and toward longevity, then maybe it would be better to put more research and time into finding something that keeps me physically active.

So I had a friend that used to dance and they stopped for years and they decided I’m going to go to one hour dance class a week. Yeah. And they’d been doing that long. Not even as a resolution, it’s just something where they said, this is what interests me. This is the dance style and want to get back into and kudos to them.

They’re doing it. And then now they’re back into dancing three times a

Phil Rickaby: week. Yeah, that’s great. Absolutely. We, if you’re going to do something like a new year’s resolution, or you’re going to set a goal for yourself, if you’re going to keep with it, it’s gotta be something you want to do otherwise you’re just not going to do it.

And then when you fail. You’re going to feel like a failure and you hate yourself forwards it. Don’t, don’t go down that road. Find something that you like to do for me. One of the things that I do, I made it it’s winter. So I haven’t done as much of it is I walk to work. It’s about an hour’s walk each day.

And so I walk to work. And if I’m feeling really healthy, like I like really energetic at the end of the day, I’ll walk home that often doesn’t happen cause I’m living Tucker, but I walk to work every day and it takes about an hour and that’s, that’s sort of like one of the ways that I keep myself active, but I know that I’m not going to go to the gym.

Like I went, I had the opportunity to get a membership. I got a membership. I went for the tour. I took the tour and I was like, I am never coming back here again.

Jessica McAuley: Does that gym rhyme with schmooze life?

Phil Rickaby: I have no comment about what the name rhymes with it rhymes with.

Jessica McAuley: Gotcha. Gotcha. You probably still have the free book on your shelf.

Phil Rickaby: Don’t I don’t. It was like they got, I got a discount membership from work, so I didn’t get anything. They begrudgingly showed me around and I was fine. I was fine. They was like, oh, there’s those machines over there? I don’t know how they work, whatever. Here’s the weight room. And there was like the root weight area was like so full of testosterone.

I was. I need to get as far away from this shit as possible.

Jessica McAuley: Oh, absolutely. No, thank you. Oh, so us as introverts, do you find that we avoid new chapters? If we can.

Phil Rickaby: I mean, again, we, like we talked about last time or a couple of weeks ago, when you, when people hear this is. There’s that fine line between introvert and social anxiety.

Right. And like we said, introversion and social anxiety in some level can go hand in hand. But they’re not, they’re not the same thing. Do I think that like, like reluctance, reluctance to start a new thing is, is part of introversion. I don’t think that’s part of introversion, but feeling. Nervous or drained when the thing that you’re about to start involves a social interaction and you cannot opt out of it.

This isn’t like a weekend party with your friends. Let’s say, if it’s a new job, if you want to get paid, you got to show up regardless of how nervous you are. And so. You have to find ways to do it. You have to, you just have to do it regardless of how nervous you are, how many, how much you have to charge up the battery before you show up on that first day, and chances are on that first day, you have to act more extroverted than you want to because it’s the first day.

And you’re trying to make a good impression. Yeah. Well yourself out more, and then you hate yourself afterwards.

Jessica McAuley: Yeah, I am. I you’re right. I don’t think it’s more, my introversion that’ll hold me back from these things. It certainly will be my anxieties, which you know, can overlap. But in these cases they don’t. When I do feel myself being reluctant toward a new chapter or trying something new I find that it it’s helpful to imagine a new routine if I needed it.

So if I’m starting a new job, if I’m starting, you know, a theater, you know some sort of theater project, I know that it’s, it may either be temporary or it’s for the long haul, but I do know that I need a tool belt going into this. I do know that it’s important that I communicate with the people that are the closest to me.

I do know it’s important to keep them connected and engaged with what’s going on in my life. So how am I going to work them in my, my own hobbies? How am I going to work this in as well? So I think part of what. Any sort of anxiety going into these things is remembering that self care is not just a recharge time.

Doing what we love. Self care is also remembering that the other things in my life matter, how am I going to fit all of this in, make it all work together? So that way, when I ease into this transition, it’s as smooth as possible.

Phil Rickaby: You know what we’re talking about, about how it is. It is generally social anxiety that keeps us from doing these new things and being enthusiastic about it.

On the other side of that, I’m just, as we’re talking about it, I’m thinking that that the introvert can also be anticipating how much energy this new thing is going to take. Right. If it’s at first day on the job or something like that, and that can be like, Why do all of that, you know, it’s like, I’m going to be so exhausted at the end of the day or whatever.

And that’s something that, that we might, that you might not be nervous, but you might be anticipating how exhausting the thing is going to be.

Jessica McAuley: You really nailed my whiny voice, by the way.

Phil Rickaby: I wasn’t actually really trying to get yours, but I’m glad that I was able to nail it. So completely.

Jessica McAuley: That’s exactly what I sound like.

Phil Rickaby: I want to ask you about a non-work transition that I know that cause we’ve talked about it. You have one of the biggest life changes that you can face coming up. How are you preparing or feeling about preparing about, about parents?

Jessica McAuley: Oh, honestly, Phil, I, you always hear these stories of people whenever they’re going through this.

They’re like something just clicked in me and it, and right away, I made the change. I haven’t started thinking about the nursery. How we’re going to do this baby shower with all the protocols and in motion right now, how, you know, what sort of parenting style are we going for? Like, you know, which I already knew, like I’m already a really good caregiver as it is.

I’m just going to put that out there. I’m already really good. I’m preparing by reminding myself every day. And it’s really hard to ignore as I go through a lot of physical changes. I haven’t seen my belly button in a very long time. But other than that, no, it’s, it’s looking over the baby registry.

It’s remembering that, that I have to get to that bedroom at some point, talking with Steve regularly every day about this baby. And whether it be in some small way of going, isn’t it going to be fun when like we get to go on our little family vacation next year or isn’t it going to be great when I’m.

When we put the baby to bed for the first night, when we get home, I’ve been looking up packing the hospital bag. I’ve been my way. I’ve actually done a lot more preparing for this than I thought. Nevermind. I give myself a lot more credit now. Absolutely. So I guess something did click, but it wasn’t until recently.

I think keeping myself engaged in the conversation and not just turning off when it starts to feel hard.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. I mean, I mean, the problem with, with, when it gets hard is, is, is, is, you know, as, as I’ve heard from many parents, you haven’t hit the heart.

Jessica McAuley: No, not even, not even. I’m just enjoying my, my sleep right now.

And the thing is, is I haven’t had a good night’s sleep in a long time as it is. And I’m so thankful that the people around me know that. And they’re so okay with me going like I’m so tired. Just leave me alone right

Phil Rickaby: now. That’s good. That’s good. Yeah. Things about, and you know, this is like, there’s a lot to, you know, I’m sure that you’re managing your anxiety cause there’s a lot, you know, there’s, there’s a lot to worry about and that sort of thing.

But the question of, of, of, of parenting style is like, I think that you can intellectualize parenting style and you can talk about. But when it comes down to it, whatever your instincts are, that’s, what’s going to happen. Right. You’re just going to, you can talk about all kinds of high minded ideas who are going to be a family that talks out our problems, and we’re not going to go to, nobody’s going to go to their room and we’re not going to do this.

We’re not going to do that. And then when the chips are down, you’re like, get the fuck into that room or whatever it is, you know, you’re like, like that’s where your child, but you know what I’m talking about? Like instincts.

Jessica McAuley: I nannied my nephew when I I lived with my sister for a little bit and I nannied him, like from the day he came home from the hospital up until like, maybe about a year and a half.

And I tried looking up as much as I could about childcare. Again, there’s something already maternal in me. That’s I have that. When I was trying to look things up and trying to remember them as best as possible, it would be, you would try it out. And then the kid would just be like, No, and like just awful or trying to keep your cool and you’re like, kid, you got to eat or a kid it’s time to go to bed.

Like, what are we going to have to go to sleep? And you’re trying to be as gentle as possible, but yeah, I’m ready to snap up myself when it happens.

Phil Rickaby: It’s I mean, it’s a stressful thing, right? Parenthood is not easy and it’s not, it’s not something that, that. I was going to say it doesn’t come naturally. It does because it’s there, you become a parent.

But you have to work. You have to figure out like, what are my instincts in this situation? And so that’s, that’s that’s yet another thing on the whole layer cake of things about parenthood. You can talk about parenting style and then basically you’ll turn into your parents as soon as you are faced with, with that.

Jessica McAuley: Oh, that it can be such a good thing or a bad thing. It

Phil Rickaby: really depends. It really, really does. I mean, there’s, there’s the parents curse that is often wished on many, a child, which is, I hope that you have a child that’s just like,

Jessica McAuley: Oh, see, I have nothing to worry about. My mommy and daddy are perfect. They listened to this podcast.

Phil Rickaby: They listen. I see. I see. I see.

Jessica McAuley: I love you guys.

Phil Rickaby: Outside of work. And impending parenthood. What is a, a change that you were faced with that, that you were faced with, that, that you had to, to prepare for and go into and how did you deal with it?

Jessica McAuley: And it doesn’t have to be a recent example. No, no thank goodness.

Mine would be moving away from my family for the first time. I left my hometown and well, move back, but I left my home. To go and be with my boyfriend who is down my husband. And we wanted to start a company together. It feels very happy for me.

Phil Rickaby: I was like stupid “aw” face. Oh

Jessica McAuley: yeah. We, I left my left my town

I went to go be with him. We wanted to open up a company and it was a change. When I told him I was looking for places. I was, you know, I’m sending him apartments and asking him, like, what is this area? Like? Is it close to where you are? And the change hit me when he said, I don’t know why you’re bothering you could just move in with me.

And then I kinda just went, yeah. Why don’t we just move in together? You know, why not? I don’t recommend every couple of days. Move in together. It’s so soon into your relationship, but I had already stayed at his place a couple of times for like about a week or so. And like, I think we already had kind of a good groove of what we would expect from a roommate, quote unquote.

So I think when he offered to let me move in with him, It suddenly became very real when I had to start looking through my stuff to make sure that we could integrate smoothly, which it worked out really well. It did,

Phil Rickaby: you know, one of the things about moving in together and it doesn’t always, it can be hard to integrate a house.

Right. But it can also be hard. What you did it worked out for you guys, but in, in a lot of cases if you, if one person moves into an apartment that is already occupied. So for example, if I move into my girlfriend’s apartment it’s already. Right. And in some ways, because we didn’t set it up together, it’s still always going to be hers.

And so if you can, and it works out, it’s great. But a lot of times it doesn’t because you’re on this, this even unconsciously, you’ve moved into somebody else’s space and you’re trying your best to make it yours. But in many cases you can’t actually do that. So. While it can work. It’s also sometimes a really good idea to make, to like, just move into a new place together, if you can, for you guys who worked out great.

And for a lot of people, it does, but for other people, it just, you can’t get past the fact that you are now in the other person’s space. And no matter how hard you try it can’t ever really be yours.

Jessica McAuley: No, it’s so true though. Like, What a risk to take I a completely different city where I didn’t know anybody.

And it’s his place. And mind you, we were living in a house with four other roommates. So we had the room in the basement. Oh yes. Oh yeah. I was so lucky to already be getting along with these roommates and they already were okay with the idea of me moving in. That’s good. Absolutely. I got lucky. So again, I don’t recommend this to everybody.

Phil Rickaby: Oh my God. I just have to say like the, like, if for most people, if your boyfriend says, move in with me and my roommates, you should probably run.

Jessica McAuley: I lived with five boys at one time. What an adventure.

Phil Rickaby: It was an adventure. You’re a very brave woman

Jessica McAuley: I was the day I moved in. I remember I remember moving in and it was a couple of days.

I was there and everybody was gone to work. I hadn’t gotten a job yet. And I cleaned the kitchen, the bathrooms, I cleaned everything top to bottom. And when they got home, Their faces were wonderfully priceless.

Phil Rickaby: I hope after that. I really hope that after that you said this never happens again.

Jessica McAuley: No, cause we know who I am. I love cleaning. I just. Cleaned only the bathroom I was using. That was the only, and I was w I was at one point ready to tell them, this is my bathroom. Now you’re not allowed in here. It was a good time. But yeah, like going back to the day I actually left, I am very close with my mom and dad.

So to have them drop me off. At the bus station with my boyfriend. Cause Steve had come down to help me grab my things and then take me back to see my dad tear up the way that he did and my mom. There until the bus actually took off was so incredibly hard. I called them every day. I transitioning into that.

There was nothing that could have made me ready for it. No matter how much preparation and the same gonna same’s going to go for when this baby gets here. As much as I can prepare, there are some things I will not be doing totally ready for

Phil Rickaby: No, of course not. Of course you can’t actually prepare. Yourself for that.

And that’s one of the things that’s super difficult about parenthood and about most, first days, most changes. You can try as hard as you can to be prepared, but you cannot be prepared for all the things that are going to happen. Getting married was also another, another big change. Like, like, you know, your, your, I was curious like where your parents, which was harder to watch for your parents.

You moving in. With Steve or you getting married to Steve? Me

Jessica McAuley: moving. Yeah. Yeah, it was it’s because when I was getting married, it was such a bonding experience for us. I think the, you know, I think it was just I mean, again, we had done three months of planning for a wedding that should have taken a year.

And to have them so close and a part of the process and really make this a family experience, I think was more rewarding than anything. Now, again, when I went to go up to see my dad and he got the first look of the wedding dress, I can still see the little gasp of breath, like the. And then, then the crying and then I cried and I don’t cry.

I don’t do that.

Phil Rickaby: Here, I mean, did you have to do that whole thing where you like wave at your eyes to keep so your makeup doesn’t doesn’t run

Jessica McAuley: okay. Funny story. I had my bouquet in my hand. And I did that and I might have whipped a flower at my face when I did it.

The photographer did not get that. And I was actually kind of upset because it was awesome. That’s

Phil Rickaby: that’s an action shot right there.

Jessica McAuley: It really was.

Phil Rickaby: Yeah. The, the, the changes are, I remember. When I, the first time I moved in with roommates I graduated from school. Then I, I, as soon as I was out of school, I found I got an apartment and it was by myself and I could afford it at the time. And then, you know, Toronto happened and I couldn’t afford it anymore.

So I got into, I, you know, I moved in with roommates and they were friends of mine. Like we were really close friends and we had a great time. I would never live with anybody. They were like the only roommates, like partners is another thing, but roommates, they were the, probably the only roommates I would ever have, have moved in with.

We just had a great time, but this was like introvert me trying to move into a place with people that yes, I knew, but you don’t really know somebody until you live with. And so there was a lot of nerves around that. I tried to focus on the good things on the things that were fun about these people that I was moving in with.

And not try to think about the, but what if they secretly suck? Fortunately they didn’t.

Jessica McAuley: Oh, that’s lucky for you. I, my I’ve lived with a set of roommates before that. I absolutely adored. We got along. It was great. Even still though my anxiety moving in was not just what if they suck. It was what if they don’t have the same cleaning standard as I do.

Phil Rickaby: And they really

Jessica McAuley: didn’t

Phil Rickaby: little possibly.

Jessica McAuley: Do you know why I really enjoyed living with Steve the first time that

Phil Rickaby: he claimed to, he cleans

Jessica McAuley: when, when we were dating very early on in our relationship. And I know he, I love telling the story, how he asked me to dinner was, do you want to go to a restaurant to eat?

With me. And in, in that same inflection, I was like, do you mean go on like a dinner date? And he’s like, yeah, yeah, yeah. That, that the second time he asked me to dinner was more comfortable. It was, I want you to come over and I want to cook for you. And I came over, we actually were going to show together at the time.

So I can’t, we, you know, we both went over to his place after rehearsal and he told me just to sit down at the table, To do whatever I want to do. He got me a drink and, you know, he just was cooking and he was telling me what he was doing. And I was like very impressed with not only just the food and how he put it together.

It was the fact that a, he cleaned as he went. So that was already like something where I was like, whoa, okay, hold on a second. This dude’s special. This one’s special. Then it was after we were done, he cleared the plates away. Made sure everything was dried, put away. Floor was swept, countertops wiped off.

And then that’s when. That man is my husband. I’m going to marry him. We are soulmates.

Phil Rickaby: I would just like to point out that essentially the first time he asked you out, he asked you out in the manner of buddy.

Jessica McAuley: He did it. It was so cute. He was like one step away from saying we don’t have to like, eat at the same table, but like, it was so sweet.

Phil Rickaby: He’s a good guy.

In terms of change. If you were to try to give somebody advice about change, that they were facing something new that was happening how would you give them advice about how to proceed?

Jessica McAuley: Ooh, that’s tough. I’ve had friends ask me for advice and it’s always a, it doesn’t matter whether the situation is a good change or a bad change for me.

I always like to remind, whoever’s asking for the advice is just remember that you are going to be a different person coming out of this. You are going to change in some way, no matter what, for the good or for the. Depending on what it is. And I don’t want to go too deep into something that could be like a really serious life change and it could be bad, but going into just a generalized piece of advice.

Try not to try not to anticipate how you can make the better of it. Now I know at the beginning of this podcast, I said, I like to look for the silver lining in things, but those are for things like, you know, brand new year, going into a new job, trying out a new project, but any change that is not in your control, try to not control it, allow it to happen.

Allow yourself to. Allow yourself to change because of it again, like I said, you’re not going to be that same person. And that’s the exciting part is no matter what it is, you’re going to learn something. Your life is going to be more enriched because of it. And the more that you fight that, and the more that you think that, you know, this is really scary.

I don’t know what I’m going to do. It doesn’t matter. You’re going to experience. No matter what it’s going to happen. It’s inevitable. So just walk into it, knowing that you are going to come out of this someone else and it’s going to be for the better.

Phil Rickaby: I absolutely agree. One of the things that I would suggest, and I don’t know if you’ve, if you do this, I know that I do.

Sometimes I will get caught up in a what if, and it’s not a, what if it’s awesome? It’s like, what if I fuck this up? Like, what if I say the wrong thing? What if I do this? And that thought will start to like balloon in my head until it’s all I can think of. And I’ve had to work very hard for ways to combat that.

Because you know what happens when that thought balloons in your head?

Jessica McAuley: You’re up until 3:00 AM

Phil Rickaby: also. That’s the thing that you’re very likely to do. Like for example if their name sounds like a funny word and that’s how you’re remembering it, but then you think to yourself, but what if I, what if I say.

The funny word rather than their real name. Oh my God. What if I call them by that funny name that I’m using to look at my God? Oh my God, what if I do that? And it takes over and then, you know, what happens when you show up on that first day? You say it’s a pleasure to meet you Mr. Penis. It’s really. And then you’re like, oh my God, no, that’s something that ever happened to me by the way.

And we want to say, it’s not something that happened, but I’m using that as an example that you just, so if, if a thought about how you could screw it up, Is starting to take over your brain, remind yourself, especially if it’s a first day of a new job or something like that. Remember your there, because they chose you.

You’re there because they want you therefore put that thought out of your head. If, if it’s something you worried about, don’t call them by their name. That first. Don’t just, don’t just, just let that go. Remember, don’t let those thoughts poison the fact that you were chosen, that they want you there and remind yourself of why you’re qualified for that.

And that, that you won out against hundreds of other applicants don’t ever ask how many applicants don’t ever ask, how many applicants, but just think of hundreds of other applicants. That’s, that’s something I can, I can fathom a hundred. Other applicants were up for this job, even if it’s like 50 other applicants were up for this job.

But if somebody is like, yeah, we had 700 people, I’ll be like, damn, I’m going to fuck everything up. And they’re going to go with somebody else, but you can like mitigate that and just think about the smaller. And just think about the fact that you won this job and there you’re the one they wanted and put everything else out of your head.

Just get rid of the expectations and tell yourself you just going to go with the flow.

Jessica McAuley: That’s yes. The what if situation exactly that let go of it because the more that you think about it and the more you keep saying the what if, what if, what if, what if yes, it’s going to happen, but. Stop that train in its tracks by just saying, okay.

If it does happen. What are the chances of a, of that actually happening, but also if it does, it happened,

Phil Rickaby: w w the other thing is that we have a tendency when we, what if we don’t, what if about good things? People, what if about bad things, right. And that’s just human nature. But if you find yourself what effing about bad things, Try to what if about some good things, even if it’s just, what if the day goes really awesome.

And everyone likes me, even if it’s just that that can be enough to get you in the door and to put that worry out of your head.

Jessica McAuley: And if you’re not used to doing that, I would suggest finding a way to remember to do that because so often we. Excuse ourselves from finding the good in things, because we’re trying so hard to manage a problem.

That’s not there. We’re trying so hard to jump in, you know, get in front of that train and stop it. Right. And it’s, there’s no use in doing that. There’s no use, it’s just find a way to affirm to yourself that what if the good thing could happen because I’m capable of a good thing happening.

Phil Rickaby: Here’s another.

Think about this. If a friend came to you and they said, I’m starting this new job, this new thing is starting. And this is what I’m worried about. Think about what you would tell them. You wouldn’t tell them. Yeah, you’re probably going to do that. You wouldn’t say that to your friend and you wouldn’t, you would be like, no, you’re not.

You’re awesome. You would say so many amazing kind things to that friend that you don’t say to yourself. So think about yourself as a friend who has that problem and give yourself that give you our friend that.

Jessica McAuley: That was really sweet. I just like to say that was a really sweet piece of advice. I liked that a lot.

I’m going to think about that the next time. I like, you know, I’m trying to take down my chocolate intake. If I wouldn’t let a friend do it, would I let myself do it

Phil Rickaby: cut down your talk by didn’t take, I say you should not. You should not. I’m pregnant.


Jessica McAuley: deserve this.

Phil Rickaby: Deserve it. And even after you’re pregnant, you post the baby out.


Jessica McAuley: I deserve all the cheesecake in the world, which over the weekend, I ate an obscene amount of cheesecake

Phil Rickaby: and make sure that you have some ready because you know what? You push the baby out of your body, whatever you want, you should be able to have.

Jessica McAuley: I need a medal I’m getting a medal

Phil Rickaby: you should get a medal, even though, even if Steve just makes it out of like, like tinfoil and like makes the post baby out medal put it on, on the metal, just like do the thing, like put that up on the wall.

Like, you’ll forget somehow that you did it. Like you need something to commemorate the fact that you had a baby. That’s not just the baby.

Jessica McAuley: No, it’s so true. I like look at my kid and I go like, oh yeah, that happened.

Phil Rickaby: Oh shit, I have one of those!

Jessica McAuley: You’re here?

Phil Rickaby: When was the last time I fed you?

Jessica McAuley: You look a little small there kid what’s happening. What’s up. What’s up.

Phil Rickaby: That is not a thing that’s going to happen.

Jessica McAuley: Yeah, no,

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